NEWS AND NOTES – MARCH 2014 MEMBER NEWSLETTER

LACTB ROLLS OUT MAJOR NEW MARKETING CAMPAIGN

This month, LATCB rolls out our new integrated marketing campaign, “What's Your L.A. Story,” bringing the L.A brand to our most important domestic feeder markets such as New York City, Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego and Phoenix, as well as our key international markets including the U.K., Australia, Canada and China. The campaign features brand new TV, digital and print ads with a fresh new look, featuring stories about the amazing experiences that you can only find in Los Angeles.

A companion meetings and conventions ad campaign is up and running in top meetings trade publications highlighting L.A. as a leading meetings destination, as we work to keep the good news coming about L.A.’s growing conventions business.

LATCB LAUNCHES NIHAO CHINA INITIATIVE WITH FIRST TRAINING SEMINAR

On Feb. 26, LATCB held the first installment of our NiHao China training program which we have custom designed to help Los Angeles hotels, attractions and other tourism businesses get “China ready.” We were expecting about 50 participants, and nearly 110 registered for the highly informative, educational seminar.

We also announced all of our new “NiHao China” initiatives, a portfolio of international marketing, training and promotional initiatives to enhance the L.A. experience for Chinese travelers and grow Chinese visitation to L.A. China is our No. 1 overseas tourism market, and we are working hard to keep visitation from China growing. In addition to the training program, LATCB introduced a Tour Guide Training Program for L.A. receptive tour guides; shopLA, which aims to build awareness among Chinese visitors of Los Angeles as a leading shopping destination; helloLA, LATCB’s new Chinese-language website and Official Visitor Guide; a new integrated consumer marketing campaign in China; and a new meetings and conventions campaign in China.

We will be offering NiHao China seminars and workshops every month except August through the end of the year, and our members are encouraged to take advantage of this valuable resource, exclusively available to LATCB members. For more information, click here.

LATCB’S FIRST NIHAO CHINA TRAINING FOR LA-BASED RECEPTIVE TOUR OPERATORS

On Feb. 28, we conducted the first session of the Tour Guide Training Program for receptive tour guides who work with Chinese visitors to L.A. The custom-designed program is meant to assure that these important ambassadors of L.A. meet quality standards and can effectively represent Los Angeles when serving Chinese tourists. For more information, click here.

2014 DISCOVER THE ARTS CAMPAIGN ON THE WAY

For the sixth consecutive year, LATCB invites visitors who book a minimum of one hotel room-night from April 7- May 16, 2014 to sample an extraordinary range of L.A. cultural offerings through “Discover the Arts.”

More than 30 cultural organizations are participating in the much-anticipated annual program, ranging from the Autry National Center to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) to Gloria Kaufman Presents Dance at the Music Center to the Battleship USS Iowa.

Dedicated ads will run on travel websites Hotels.com and Orbitz.com. The travel sites will generate nearly 22 million consumer media impressions in key feeder markets in Northern and Southern California, New York, Chicago and Washington, D.C. Last year’s “Discover the Arts” campaign generated 23,000 hotel room-nights, 3,000 coupon redemptions, and $5.6 million in direct visitor spending — a 28:1 return on investment. For more information on this year’s campaign, click here.

dineLA WINTER RESTAURANT WEEK RESULTS

LATCB’s 2014 dineLA Winter Restaurant Week (Jan. 20 – 31) featured 362 participating restaurants, making it the largest event of its kind in the United States, and also saw more consumer participation than ever. Twice a year, dineLA’s Restaurant Weeks offer a selection of specially-priced, specially-created $15, $20 and $25 lunch menus, and $25, $25 and $45 dinner menus at restaurants across the L.A area.

Winter 2014 Restaurant Week Results:
•    362 participating restaurants (8.1% more than Summer 2013, 26.6% more than Winter 2013)
•    48 restaurants participating for the first time
•    59,628 total diners

Winter Restaurant Week received major nationwide media coverage generating a total of more than $500,000 in equivalent ad value, reaching an audience totaling more than 69.2 million. Articles appeared in more than 50 magazines, newspapers, TV and radio stations, blogs and websites. LATCB’s “Dine Snap Win” Instagram photo contest generated over 10,000 entries of photos that diners snapped of their dineLA menu dishes

LATCB TRADE & TOURISM MISSION TO MEXICO, MARCH 2-6

Continuing our focus on growing international visitation, LATCB President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. just returned from a trade mission with Mayor Eric Garcetti to Mexico, one of America’s strongest trade partners and our largest non-overseas market for international visitation. Wooden joined the Mayor, port and airport officials and a delegation from the Chamber of Commerce. In order to help grow visitation from Mexico even further, the delegation met with Mexico's Minister of Tourism, and several airlines and cruise ship companies to help increase flights and cruises to L.A. and promote Los Angeles as a destination. In addition, LATCB hosted a media lunch for more than 30 consumer and trade journalists.

CEO ERNEST WOODEN JR. GIVES TOURISM INDUSTRY UPDATE TO CITY’S FINANCIAL INVESTORS & PUBLIC OFFICIALS

LATCB President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. gave an update on the Los Angeles tourism industry as a panelist at the 2nd Annual Los Angeles Regional Investors Conference on Feb. 26 at Universal Studios Hollywood. He was joined by Jordan Levine of Beacon Economics, and Bruce Baltin of PKF Consulting for the panel, which was moderated by Los Angeles City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana. Mayor Eric Garcetti also addressed the audience of more than 100 bankers and financiers who invest in the city’s municipal bonds and pensions. Wooden discussed L.A.’s record-breaking visitation and rising position as a leading tourist destination with the goal of furthering the infrastructure development needed to accommodate 50 million visitors by 2020. 

CEO ERNEST WOODEN JR. GIVES TOURISM INDUSTRY UPDATE TO DOWNTOWN CIVIC & BUSINESS LEADERS

LATCB President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. gave an update on the Los Angeles tourism industry to L.A. business and civic leaders at a meeting of the Rotary Club of Los Angeles Friday, Feb. 21 at the California Club to promote understanding of the importance of L.A.’s tourism industry in keeping our local economy growing and strong. He discussed L.A.’s record-breaking tourism and Downtown L.A.’s burgeoning reputation as one of the country’s hottest metropolitan neighborhoods for dining, entertainment, arts and culture.

VISIT CALIFORNIA PANEL – “CHINA 2.0 – SAVVY SPENDERS”

LATCB President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. led a panel discussion at the Visit California 2014 Outlook Forum event on Feb. 5 that provided an inside look into the soaring Chinese visitation market and how California’s retailers, public relations professionals and marketers can engage with Chinese travelers and the Chinese visitor market. The panel, "China 2.0 – Savvy Spenders: Chinese Travelers Drive Big Results," featured Ms. Yanjie Wang, Director of the China National Tourist Office in Los Angeles, one of 19 overseas offices of the China National Tourism Administration, and Mr. Li Dong, Chief Branding Officer at UnionPay International Co., China’s only credit card company. Ms. Wang discussed the Chinese visitor profile, their travel preferences, group vs. individual travel and new trends in Chinese travel. Mr. Dong discussed the purchasing power of Chinese travelers and how they conduct their transactions, how UnionPay works and its importance to the China market, and how businesses in California can become able to take payment with UnionPay.

DESTINATION SALES DIRECTOR MARILES KROK ELECTED PRESIDENT MPI-SCC

LATCB’s Destination Sales Director for the LAX/Beach Cities area Mariles Krok was elected 2014/2015 President of the Board of Directors of Meeting Professionals International Southern California Chapter (MPI-SCC) in February. Mariles has been working in the hospitality industry for 18 years. She has been a member of MPI-SCC for eight years and has served on the Board for six. She received MPI-SCC's 2013/2014 Chapter Leader of the Year Award and serves on the Marketplace Advisory Council for MPI International.

PR NEWSFLASH

The LATCB PR Team has been working hard to keep L.A. and LATCB members and partners in the news and on the minds of travelers. The PR Team has been rolling out coordinated media efforts, pitching and securing stories about LA and our members and partners to top-of-the-line consumer and travel trade publications for business and leisure travel, in the U.S. and abroad. Here is a sampling of recent high-profile media coverage. 

LOS ANGELES TIMES – “ELEVEN NEW GATHERINGS COMING TO L.A. CONVENTION CENTER”

The Los Angeles Times published an article highlighting L.A.’s recovering conventions business and 2014’s strong line-up of conventions at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The Times online has a circulation of 17,782,589, and the article was published twice, delivering an ad value of $328,976. To see the article, click here.

LOS ANGELES DAILY NEWS – “L.A.REGION RIDES BIG TOURISM WAVE”

The PR Team worked with the Daily News on a front page story and an online article on Feb. 23 examining Los Angeles’ booming tourism industry, noting “Tourism was a shining star of the Southern California economy in 2013, turning in a record-breaking performance.” The article also pointed out L.A.’s growing list of new hotel development and surging conventions business. The Daily News has a circulation of 93,073 and the article delivered an ad value of $42,880. To see the article, click here.

GOOD MORNING AMERICA – AWARDS SEASON IN L.A.

LATCB’s PR Team worked with the anchors of ABC's Good Morning America show on a piece that ran the Friday before the Academy Awards, meant to promote Awards Season in Los Angeles and highlight L.A. as a warm winter destination. The PR Team provided anchors Josh Elliott and Lara Spencer with welcome packages to help them adjust to sunny, warm L.A. as they arrived from frigid New York to cover the Academy Awards. The packages included custom surfboards from local manufacturer Roberts Surfboards printed with the “hello LA” logo, custom beach bags made by SoLA (Sisters of Los Angeles) with gifts from Kitson. The piece delivered an ad value of $16,700. To see the video, click here.

OK MAGAZINE – AWARDS SEASON IN L.A.

LATCB's PR Team worked with OK! magazine on a story on Awards Season in L.A., highlighting attractions, activities, hotels and restaurants in Hollywood and Venice. The British weekly celebrity magazine has a circulation of 342,395 and the article delivered an ad value of $87,397. To see the article, click here.

STYLE AT HOME – AWARDS SEASON FAM RESULTS

As a result of the LATCB Awards Season FAM in January, the monthly Canadian home decor and lifestyle magazine Style at Home published a series of blog articles highlighting the décor and ambience of hotels and restaurants in West Hollywood, Hollywood, Downtown and Beverly Hills. The five articles reached an audience of 600,000, delivering an ad value of $27,750. To see the articles, click the following links: 

http://www.styleathome.com/blog/2014/02/03/hot-hotel-andaz-west-hollywood/
http://www.styleathome.com/blog/2014/02/04/restaurant-recommendation-cle...
http://www.styleathome.com/blog/2014/02/05/four-seasons-los-angeles/
http://www.styleathome.com/blog/2014/02/06/restaurant-tortilla-republic/
http://www.styleathome.com/blog/2014/02/07/jw-marriott-at-la-live/

KUWAIT TIMES & ASHARQ AL AWSAT – MID-EAST FAM RESULTS

As a result of the LATCB and British Airways FAM trip for Middle Eastern journalists in January, the newspapers Kuwait Times and Asharq Al-Awsat published articles highlighting hotels, restaurants, shopping, dining, attractions and the new Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Kuwait Times has a circulation of 45,000 and the article delivered an ad value of $6,453. Asharq Al-Awsat has a circulation of 263,121 and the article delivered an ad value of $16,580. To see the Kuwait Times article, click here. To see the Asharq Al-Awsat article, click here

CHICAGO TRIBUNE – LATCB’S AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE TOUR

The Chicago Tribune highlighted LATCB’s new African American Heritage Tour, launched during Black History Month. The guide helps visitors explore L.A.’s rich African American culture throughout the year, with segments in South L.A. and Downtown; the Beach Cities; and the Westside, and includes visits to cultural and historical points of interest, museums, shops, and restaurants. To see the article, click here.

INDUSTRY NEWS

EXPANSION OF AIR SERVICE FROM AUSTRALIA

United Airlines has announced six new non-stop flights per week between Melbourne Australia and Los Angeles starting Oct. 28, 2014, with future plans to expand to daily flights. For more information click here.

LOS ANGELES & LAX LISTED AMONG TOP 10 TRAVEL BRANDS BY SKIFT.COM

Travel website Skift.com ranked Los Angeles among the top 10 destinations, and LAX among top airports in its list of leading travel brands. Skift ranks nearly 2,000 travel brands, based on their numbers of Twitter and Instagram followers, Facebook likes and YouTube video views. Los Angeles was the highest ranked U.S. city among the top 10 destinations, and LAX was the highest ranked U.S. airport on the list of airports.
To see the rankings, click here.

FOUR LOS ANGELES EATERIES ON GQ MAGAZINE’S “BEST NEW RESTAURANTS IN AMERICA”

Four Los Angeles restaurants were among those named by GQ Magazine in its annual 25 Best New Restaurants in America. The restaurants listed were chef Ludo Lefebvre's Trois Mec (No. 2); chef Josef Centeno’s Orsa & Winston (No. 8); chef Ari Taymor’s Alma (No. 12), which was also named Bon Appetit’s Best New Restaurant of 2013; and chef Nancy Silverton’s Chi Spacca (No. 20). Los Angeles was the only city on the list to have four restaurants named. To see the article, click here.

METRO SECURES $669 MILLION GRANT TO CONNECT ALL DOWNTOWN TRAINS

On Feb. 20, Metro announced a $669 million grant plus a $160 million federal loan that will go toward building a subway through Downtown, connecting the Gold Line at the Little Tokyo Station to the 7th/Metro Center Station, where the Red, Purple, Blue and Expo lines meet. Metro approved the connector in 2012, and will include three new stations in Downtown: 1st/Central, 2nd/Broadway and 2nd/Hope. Both the grant and the loan pave the way for construction to begin later this year, with completion expected in 2020. Within the next calendar year, Metro expects to have five rail projects being built simultaneously that will add about 29 miles of rail to the existing 87-mile Metro Rail network. For more information, click here.